TOP BAR - Fixtures

Match Reaction: Northampton Saints 23 Gloucester Rugby 20

Northampton Saints director of rugby Jim Mallinder admits his side’s desire, rather than their accuracy, is winning them matches in Aviva Premiership Rugby at the moment after a 23-20 victory over Gloucester Rugby.

The hosts earned themselves a ten-point half-time advantage at Franklin’s Gardens after Louis Picamoles’ powerful try-scoring effort and eight points from the boot of Stephen Myler – which took him past 1500 Aviva Premiership Rugby points.

Gloucester however would not lie down with Jacob Rowan and Charlie Sharples finishing well to give the Cherry & Whites a second-half lead, but up popped replacement scrum-half Tom Kessell to burrow over the whitewash for what proved to be a game-winning score.

Saints move up to fifth with the rest of the Aviva Premiership Rugby’s Round 7 fixtures to come, but having not yet fired on all cylinders in the league and now heading into the beginning of their Anglo-Welsh Cup campaign next week, Mallinder insists he is just about satisfied.

“It’s always going to be tough in competitive sport as you have your ups and your downs, and when you are on a roll it’s magnificent,” he said.

“But when you’re not playing so well it’s hard for the players and hard for the coaches, and you’ve got to come out, respond, and get better – and we’ve won the game today.

“That was a real positive step, but without a doubt it was a nervy performance rather than a beautiful one. There is a desire there though and we’ve seen that throughout the season.

“If you look back to our earlier games, particularly at home, the desire is there but the accuracy needs to be worked on and improved.

“We got the important win today though and that moves us up the table, and we’ve got a couple of weeks now in a different competition which is a chance to give some of the younger lads and fringe players a bit of a chance.”

Meanwhile Mallinder’s counterpart David Humphreys was left rueing another missed chance after his side went down by less than a score for the third time this term.

The Cherry & Whites have also drawn two Aviva Premiership Rugby matches and as a result sit tenth in the standings, but Humphreys is confident that with the standard of rugby they are playing and a little more ruthlessness, Gloucester will soon turn narrow defeats into resounding victories.

He said: “We’re obviously disappointed with the result and I thought we did play some good rugby.

“We defended unbelievably again as we did down in Exeter, and we didn’t get the result we deserved, but at the end of the day you’ve got to congratulate Northampton for holding on.

“Too many penalties at the set piece ultimately cost us the game, but we’ve only had seven matches in Aviva Premiership Rugby so that’s just the first phase of the league over with.

“We need to sit down and look at those games, but when you look at how close they’ve all been, we’ve played some really good rugby at times and were the better team in patches tonight, but unfortunately we’ve fallen a bit short.”

3 home games, 3 MOTM awards for King Louis!

A photo posted by Northampton Saints (@officialnorthamptonsaints) on

Northampton Saints: Foden; Wilson, G Pisi (Tuala 78), Mallinder (Hutchinson 59), North; Myler, Dickson (Kessell 62); A Waller (E Waller 67), Haywood (Hartley 57), Brookes (Hill 59), Paterson (Ratuniyarawa 59), Day, Wood, Clark (Gibson 9), Picamoles


Gloucester Rugby: Hook; Sharples, Scott, Atkinson (Burns 70), May; Twelvetrees, Laidlaw (c); McAllister (Orr 64), Hibbard (Matu’u 70), Afoa, Savage, Galarza, Moriarty (Kvesic 64), Rowan, Morgan

Not used: Ma’afu, Latta, Heinz, Purdy
Northampton Saints 23

Tries: Picamoles, Kessell

Conversions: Myler 2

Penalties: Myler 3
Gloucester Rugby 20

Tries: Rowan, Sharples

Conversions: Laidlaw 2

Penalties: Laidlaw 2
Referee: Tom Foley

Attendance: 14,274

Latest News

Singha Premiership Rugby 7s live on BT Sport with highlights on Channel 5

Channel 5’s landmark coverage of domestic rugby begins in earnest this week, with the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s finally returning…

Saracens name squad for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

Tom Whiteley will skipper a youthful Saracens side in this weekend’s Singha 7s tournament at Franklin’s Gardens, after the Men…

Tom Whiteley

Will Homer to captain Bath Rugby at the Singha 7s

Will Homer will captain Bath Rugby at the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s this weekend at Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton. The scrum-half,…

Will Homer

Saints squad announced for Singha Premiership Rugby Sevens Series 

The Northampton Saints squad has been announced for this weekend’s Singha Premiership Rugby Sevens Series, which is being played in…

Jamie Elliott

Harlequins announce squad for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

Henry Cheeseman will captain the 12-man squad against Gloucester Rugby and London Irish in Pool B of the Singha 7s.…

Henry Cheeseman

Wasps name squad for 2017 Premiership Rugby Singha 7s

Wasps have today named their squad for the 2017 Premiership Rugby Singha 7s, which will be hosted at Franklin’s Gardens…

Dan Robson

London Irish name squad for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

London Irish have named their side for the 2017 Singha Premiership Rugby 7s, which will be held at Northampton Saints’…

Rory BRand

Harlequins set for pre-season training camp at adidas’ German HQ

Following the conclusion of the Premiership Rugby Singha 7s series this weekend, Harlequins travel to Herzogenaurach to continue their pre-season…

Harlequins set for pre-season training camp at adidas’ German HQ

Chiefs sign van der Sluys

Exeter Chiefs have bolstered their squad ahead of the new 2017/18 season with the acquisition of powerful South African lock…

Wilhelm van der Sluys

Sharks Announce Exciting Squad For Singha 7s

Sale Sharks can announce an exciting squad to take part in the Premiership Rugby Singha 7's this weekend at Franklin's…

Paolo Odogwu

Leicester Tigers Singha Premiership Rugby 7s team announcement

Leicester Tigers have named their squad for the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s. Tigers take on Newcastle Falcons and Wasps on…

Alex Glashan

Will Kaye set for birthday to remember with Leicester Tigers

Leicester Tigers’ new link-up with Loughborough University will provide youngster Will Kaye with an unforgettable birthday present. The Loughborough student…

Cameron Cowell captains Newcastle Falcons in Singha 7s

England 7s international Cameron Cowell will captain Newcastle Falcons in this week's Singha Premiership Rugby 7s at Northampton's Franklin's Gardens.…

Cameron Cowell

Stelling to lead Warriors at Singha Premiership Rugby Sevens

Max Stelling will lead Warriors in the new-look Singha Premiership Sevens this weekend at Northampton Saints’ Franklin’s Gardens. Stelling, who…

Max Stelling

Exeter Chiefs name squad for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

Ricky Pellow says Exeter Chiefs are relishing the chance to kick-off the new 2017/18 season with a big showing at…

Max Bodilly

Gloucester Rugby confirm squad for this weekend’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

The 12-man Gloucester Rugby squad for this weekend’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s action has been named, with an exciting young…

Ollie Thorley will feature for the Cherry & Whites

Worcester Warriors get set for this weekend’s Singha 7s with Gordon Ross in charge

Worcester Warriors are looking to their experienced 7s players to make an impact in the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s tournament…

Gordon Ross

Adam Radwan ready to fly for Newcastle Falcons in Singha 7s action

Having lit up last season’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s, Newcastle Falcons flyer Adam Radwan is determined to do the same…

Adam Radwan

Singha 7s is a ‘brilliant tournament’ says Harlequins’ Ross Chisholm

Harlequins full-back Ross Chisholm is urging his up-and-coming compatriots to grab their Singha Premiership Rugby 7s opportunity with both hands.…

Ross Chisholm